Distracted driving also means distracted by the dog

How many times have you taken the dog for a ride and had him or her in your lap, jumping back and forth over the seats, licking your ear, fighting with another dog companion or just hogging up the back window so you can’t see other traffic? This is a common scenario for many pet owners, but what you may not realize is that having a loose dog in your vehicle is just as dangerous as talking on the cell phone or texting. And yet, close to two-thirds of pet owners admit they drive while feeding, playing and petting their animals.

The American Automobile Association has found that a loose dog involved in a car accident where the speed was 50 miles per hour exerts a force of 500 lbs. on whatever it hits as it careens around inside the vehicle. Even more frightening? An 80-lb. dog in an accident at 30 miles per hour carries an impact force of 2,400 lbs.

For safety’s sake, use an in-vehicle pet harness to prevent them your pet from becoming a deadly projectile.